Skip to comments.Matt Yglesias: Solving Non-Problems
Posted on 01/03/2014 5:04:07 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
Slate.com has become a journalistic ghetto, an Amateur Online Webzine Specializing in Hit-Trolling and Outrage-Fishing, as Ace calls it, and their business and economics correspondent (?) Matt Yglesias gets in the spirit with a 415-word item under this headline:
Why Taxing the Rich Is Great
Yglesias quotes one sentence from a New York Times article:
Matt Hlavin, an entrepreneur in Cleveland who owns seven businesses, mostly in manufacturing, bought three Mercedes last year: a $237,000 SLS AMG and a $165,000 S63 AMG for himself, and a $97,000 GL550 sport utility vehicle for his wife.
Yglesias then proceeds to argue Im sure youre surprised that it is a bad thing for Matt Hlavin to have three Mercedes.
Thats it. Thats all hes got.
And when I say that Yglesias argues that its a bad thing for Hlavin to have three Mercedes, of course, I mean Yglesias just assumes this, and also assumes Slate.coms readers share his contempt for Hlavins wealth and thus are eager to applaud Yglesiass plan to expropriate and re-distribute Hlavins wealth:
[I]f you managed to give it to the truly needy in the United States, youd create a huge surge in well-being. And of course if you were able to use it to reduce severe third-world poverty, the gains would be incredible. . . . The kind of conspicuous consumption that drives people to buy a $165,000 S63 AMG is basically zero sum, whereas the kind of consumption that a family in the bottom half of the income distribution would finance with more money is not.
The assumptions embedded in Yglesiass argument (which is not actually an argument at all) are enormous. He assumes, for example, that Hlavin and other wealthy people are fixed targets, whose economic behavior will not be modified by higher taxes. Theyre supposed to keep earning at the same rate, no matter how steeply you increase the progressive taxes on their income. And, at a second degree of causation, Yglesias evidently never considers whether changes in the economic activity of the rich (however you define this) produced by higher taxation might also result in greater hardship for the poor.
The best anti-poverty program in the world is a job, after all, and if higher taxation of the rich results in less capital investment in business, there will be fewer jobs created. You cant make capitalism work without capital, and Yglesiass judgment that someone with three Mercedes has too much capital too much wealth requires a belief that excess wealth is an economic problem.
Why? Yglesias never adequately explains this. He simply assumes that Hlavins wealth is a problem and then proceeds to solve it, without any real consideration of obstacles to implementing his redistributionist policy, or the potential harms of such a policy:
Id say the taxation should focus on Hlavins consumption spending more than his income per se, and should be designed to especially hit activities with substantial environmental impacts. But the point is that taking the money Matt Hlavin is spending at the Mercedes dealership and giving it to other people is a huge winner.
Alternative proposal: If there were a tax on bullsh*t, Matt Yglesias could pay off the national debt by the end of the year.
I bet over 90% of the people who have three Mercedes are Democrats.
He hasn't told us what the man produces in his seven manufacturing companies, and he hasn't considered that what he manufactures already creates a huge surge in well-being, and already makes this world a better place. Matt Hlavin makes this world a better place every day of the year by what he does with his life.
Matt Yglesias, as far as we know, doesn't make a darned thing.
ANd Yglesias can’t sing, either.
Just another leftist trolling for his “15 seconds of shame”.
Yglesias is a war monger.
MATT HLAVIN: President, Thogus Products Co., 37
(FORTY UNDER 40 CLASS OF 2012)
So when they break down as these cars are wont to do, what does the greedy owner do? Goes to a shop to get them fixed, gets gas from a local merchant, maybe buys a Coke and a candy bar in the convenience store.
Point being that liberal cretins don't "get" that rich people actually make other "little people" rich or at least comfortable.
Perfect example, those nasty, filthy "private jet owners". Who does Obama thinks maintains them, or flies them, or packs the luggage on them?
Hint: Just people who are skilled and provide quality service.
If a limo driver is rude to Beyonce, guess who's butt is out of a job?
Rich SOBs want to be pampered. If someone can provide such pampering, they'll be rewarded.
Mine didn't cost anything like those did.
Wow. The man sounds impressive. I admire people like him.
You know, we probably most of us have a bias, in which we imagine the world would be a better place if more people were like me. Matt Yglesias looks at Matt Hlavin and sees someone as foreign to him as an alien from another planet. He doesn’t think, man, that guy runs rings around me. It doesn’t occur to him to admire the man for what he has built, but only to aspire to take it from him.
You are correct. Many if not all of the ads are for services that some "little guy" can provide.
Example, security systems, guard dog trainers, even hired private bodyguards.
Hell even luxury house cleaners and pool technicians.
If you can tap into that market by being the best, discreet service provider, you can get "rich" yourself.
Old friend of mine has such a service:
Bingo, you hit it on the head. And I will bet most of the others are absolute Rinos. Taxing the rich was never something I endorsed but I am changing my mind. The more we lowered the taxes on them and their companies the more they became liberals and the more the rinos among them became feckless and duplitious. It is like when their taxes were lowered then government spending became a source of income rather than a tax burden. Since even the amnesty loving rino rich are trying to turn us into a socialist country through design, stupidity or greed (again amnesty) I think they should get a taste of what is coming their way in advance. I think we should start taxing them until the border is secure and we have fair coverage from their corporate media.
Matt Yglesias, as far as we know, doesn’t make a darned thing.
he makes me crazy.
well, he is not alone
As with most liberals, Yglesias seems to think that money is a fixed-quantity resource i.e. if one person has a lot, then someone else can’t get it. There was a “meme” picture on Facebook some time ago that talked about how the rich were “hoarding” all the money, and that meant that there wasn’t any left for the “poor”. So in the economically-illiterate world of the typical liberal, it really *is* horrible that this guy dropped close to half a mil on expensive cars, because to them, that means that that money is now gone forever, wasted on a luxury.
>>If you can tap into that market by being the best, discreet service provider, you can get “rich” yourself.
I have a friend out in L.A. who is making a good living as an event photographer. Part of his success is that he does celebrity events and has a reputation that his pictures NEVER leak to TMZ, National Enquirer, or the like. I’ve known him for a decade, and while he has mentioned a few names, even I have never seen a pic.
It’s amazing what quality service and integrity will do for you.
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